Benefits and Harms of Pacifier Use
The pacifier satisfies the baby's natural sucking instinct and provides him with a sense of security. The sucking movement is a source of satisfaction and happiness for the baby in itself. Because in the postpartum period, the most powerful reflexive action of the baby is sucking. Thanks to the pacifier, he calms down and sleeps more comfortably. The baby, who is not given a pacifier, may start to suck the thumb and make it a habit until a very old age. It is more comfortable to discourage your baby from pacifiers than to discourage thumb sucking. Some experts say pacifiers help baby gain some motor skills with their hands. An example of this is that they feel around their crib or bed to find out if they drop it and try to put the pacifier back into their mouths. When and why should pacifier use be stopped?
The pacifier, which is frequently used in infancy, should be discontinued at the end of the age of 2 at the latest. The habit of sucking, which continues after the age of 2, may cause the teeth to move and the upper teeth to be pulled forward and the lower teeth to be pulled back, causing an opening between them. If it can be left in this period, the formation of these openings is prevented. However, the openings that occur after the age of 3.5 may become fixed. V-type upper jaw (upper jaw narrowing) and thus facial deformation may occur in children who are suckling until the age of 3-4 years. Ear and nose disorders are more common in children who continue to suck a pacifier until they are around 4 years old.
Considerations When Using a Pacifier
The pacifier base prevents the baby from swallowing the pacifier. This plastic part is made so that it does not block the nostrils and contains holes to allow air to pass through. Pacifiers are manufactured from two types of raw materials, rubber and silicone. Rubber is a natural substance, it is good in terms of elasticity and durability. Especially for teething babies, rubber pacifiers should be preferred. However, rubber teats deteriorate quickly as they absorb water into them. Silicon is also produced from silicon. Silicone pacifiers do not break easily, but they are not durable against tooth impact. Therefore, silicone pacifiers are more suitable for babies who have not yet teethed. Palateless pacifiers are preferred by mothers for babies as they resemble a mother's breast. However, such pacifiers may impair the structure of the palate and the alignment of the upper anterior teeth by putting pressure on the palate, especially after one year of age. Palateless pacifiers should not be used after one year of age. The palatal pacifier is more elliptical and curved upwards.
Due to this anatomical shape, it can be used easily even between 2-3 years of age. Since it is fully adapted to the palate, it does not cause any disorders. It is more difficult to put babies to sleep without a pacifier at night. If the baby cannot sleep without a pacifier, choose a pacifier with a palate. After the baby falls asleep, you should take the pacifier out of his mouth without waking him up. It is definitely not right to dip the pacifier in sugar or honey before giving it to the baby. This action damages the baby's tooth enamel and can cause tooth decay. In addition, honey is not given to the baby until the age of 1.5 due to the toxic effect of honey. Sugar should not be given to babies until 3 years old. Also, the baby who is used to it may want to have a sweet taste in his mouth all the time. The sterilization of the pacifier varies according to the raw material from which it is made. Rubber ones are cleaned cold with the help of a special disinfectant. Of course, do not forget to rinse well. Silicone ones are also cleaned by hot method. If you want the pacifiers to stay clean all the time, you can prevent your baby from falling to the ground by hanging them around his neck with the wide and safe pacifier straps produced for this job. The plastic mouthpiece on the back of the pacifier should be tiny so that your newborn baby doesn't block his nose. But if you are going to buy a pacifier for a child who has passed the infancy period, care should be taken to ensure that the mouthpiece section on the back is large enough that it cannot be put into the mouth as it is. The nipples of the pacifiers, which are described as 'orthodontic', are flat; On the other hand, the more usual varieties have rounded heads. While it has been suggested that the orthodontic varieties are better for gums and teeth, it may be better to try both to see which one your baby will choose. The shape of the plastic mouthpiece is your choice, not your baby's. However, whichever you choose, it's important to note that it has vents on it. All pacifiers must comply with approved safety standards. Do not buy pacifiers whose standards are not clearly stated on the label. Having ventilation holes in the mouthpiece of the pacifier is extremely important if a baby has a stuffy nose or if an older child takes it whole. Throw away pacifiers if they are even a little worn. Pacifiers should not be hung around the neck of very young babies. Your newborn's pacifier needs to be germ-free, just like bottle nipples. You can also use the methods you have used for disinfecting baby bottles in pacifiers. By the time your baby reaches the stage where he often puts his fingers and other objects in his mouth, there is no need to disinfect the pacifiers. However, if the pacifier falls on the floor, wash it well anyway. Keeping unused pacifiers in a container keeps them clean.